A new report by Vera Kichanova, an urban policy researcher with Zaha Hadid Architects and PhD student at King's College London, argues that Britain should legalise micro homes:
Housing is the most crucial problem faced by Londoners as supply has not kept pace with demand, leading to a quintupling of average prices over the past 50 years.
Many are now forced to endure long commutes, live in overcrowded shared flats, or leave the city. In the past 20 years, London’s population has grown by 25%, but the number of homes by only 15%. By 2025, 3.5m Londoners will be living in rented housing, with 79% of the adults who moved to London in the last year renting.
In addition to reforming the planning system to allow more houses to be built, micro-housing would enable land to be used more efficiently.
Micro-housing is not for everyone, however, for many younger individuals smaller homes would provide the opportunity to live centrally: close to work, entertainment and other amenities at an affordable price.
Micro-housing is about expanding the choices available to the many Londoners who are open to living in smaller apartments.
Micro-housing is not the same as cramped sub-division of existing units, they are smart, modern, custom designed units that make good use of space which have won prestigious architectural awards. Micro-housing is often accompanied by communal amenities such as games rooms and open living spaces that help address loneliness.
Local authorities must reverse their opposition to smaller units in order to provide Londoners with more housing choice at affordable levels.